Post # 17
Ours is tied into our venue package, but it’ll be about $98 a head (but this also includes fees for our cake, 3 hotel rooms, parking, linens, favors, centerpieces, etc.). I second the suggestions about restaurants that do catering on the side. Here in Pittsburgh (and a few weddings I’ve been to out near Philly) have been big fans of bbq meals. They’re delicious and from what friends have said a great budget option.
Post # 18
@YogaFaerie: I’d be frustrated, too!
With all of the fees for china and linens (seriously, the food needs to be put on a plate; it should just be included in the cost of the entree), plus the service fees (from the caterer and our venue has one as well) and gratuity (and tax, of course), we stopped looking at traditional catering in our area. Once we figured out that the ~$25 entrees were going to end up at $35-$40 pp before booze, we decided to go rogue.
We haven’t nailed down our catering yet, but we’re planning to have a BBQ buffet from a highly rated restaurant (ribs, chicken and pork shoulder with a few sides, salad, rolls, plus lasagna for the veggies). Base price is $20 a head and I think we’ll be at about $25 pp once all of the fees are in (Our venue allows us to bring our own alcohol). Our venue is a conference center in a county park, so the rustic food kind of matches the surroundings.
Post # 19
Our hall is doing the catering and its $75/pp for antipasta buffet, plated 4 course dinner, dessert buffet, deluxe open bar, upgraded linens and chiavari chairs.
Post # 20
- Wedding: May 2014 - Madison, WI
Ours is $35 pp – includes a plated meal (w/salad, bread, tea, coffee, water, soda), champagne toast, and room rental. Also includes all china, silverware, etc, white linens (more if we decide to upgrade), votive candles, glass hurricanes, and mirrors for centerpieces if we want to use them.
We’re still working on adding in all of rentals and alcohol. That’s pretty much up to us on what we want to include so we’ll see but I can easily see it adding $10/pp bringing us closer to $45 pp.
Post # 21
this is our package…. with tax & gratuity it is 72 per person. price includes the facility rental, linens & utensils, service & open bar..
Post # 22
What’s your location? Location is everything! You’ll easily find that us metropolitan brides in areas like DC, NY, Boston end up going way above $100/pp, and then the Midwest/South brides are under $20/pp. If you’re in a metropolitan area and looking for something half-decent, then $80/pp+ sounds standard. Options to lower costs? Less guests.
Post # 23
+1. Woe be to the city bride, we’re spending nearly $15K on booze and catering for around 90 people, getting nothing that special. It would have been half that amount or less in a more suburban/rural area.
Post # 24
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
Wow, that’s crazy. We paid $23/pp for dinner, cake/cupcakes, and iced tea. We did our other beverages and cocktail hour food separately.
Post # 25
Yep! Glad to here we’re not alone in spending that much for that amount of people, our cost was pretty much identical for 85 people. Of course, we set a high standard and wanted our food to be amazeballs with a big selection, and it was. So yeah when I hear people say that they think $50-$60/pp is a lot, oh man…
Oh and that doesn’t include cake!
Post # 26
We’re having a BYO for booze, and supplying a bridal cocktail that hubby and I are making, plus a few select wines and beers to keep the cost down (we were almost charged $65 a head just for drinks). As for food were having a full carvery buffet, including three types of veggy dishes, pasta, bread rolls, salads, sauces, dips. Plus an Hour of nibbles before the reception, and desert, and then put cake. With all cutlery, linen, crickets etc its coming too just over $60 a head.
but like some bees have said, its all about your location. If your in a city (which I’m not), expect to pay upward of $100 pp. check with your venue, Mabey you can do some of it yourself? Or cut an hour from the open bar? I know it’s not ideal, but you never know.
Post # 27
holy canoli! I’m from nc and I couldn’t find anyone like that… maybe I just didn’t look hard enough?
we’re paying roughly 21 dollars per person, 1605 total…that’s for the cake, cocktail hour (which is just cheeseball, fruit, crackers stuff like that) and the dinner.
No glassware, flatware, or table linens. I’m so jealous!
Post # 28
City bride. :-/ $150-200/pp is the norm, doesn’t include alcohol.
Post # 29
That’s on the low-end of what I was quoted…without alcohol.
Post # 30
I am convinced that caterers are the laziest, most passive aggressive people on the planet. We had SO MANY who never responded to my initial inquiry at all, and half the ones who did would never tell us whether our date was available. Some don’t even respond to multiple phone calls. If I started treating potential clients like that at my job, I’d be in the unemployment line the next day.
At this point we will be lucky if we aren’t having a taco truck for a caterer. 🙁
Post # 31
@YogaFaerie: That is a lot for JUST food. With rentals, buying our own alcohol, staff, tipping, and food we hit $180/person, and that was with a base of $65/person for the food alone. I’m in NY, so can’t imagine where $80/person for food alone would be appropriate! Oh and did I mention the food sucked!? We had a great tasting, but then our caterer ended up having health issues and secretly replaced himself with his sister who is a baker, not a chef. Nothing like spending that much money for hockey puck biscuits and pulled pork that tasted like Manwich, but I digress….